CBS said Tuesday it would move in a “different direction” to open “Thursday Night Football,” after Rihanna blasted the network for apparently planning to use her musical opening again after cutting it from last week’s broadcast amid the Ray Rice domestic abuse controversy.
"Beginning this Thursday, we will be moving in a different direction with some elements of our Thursday Night Football open,” CBS said in a statement to E! News. “We will be using our newly created Thursday Night Football theme music to open our game broadcast."
Hours earlier, Rihanna had slammed CBS on Twitter.
"CBS you pulled my song last week, now you wanna slide it back in this Thursday?" wrote the 26-year-old star, who was involved in a very public domestic violence dispute with ex-boyfriend Chris Brown back in 2009. "NO, F--k you! Y'all are sad for penalizing me for this."
In another, seemingly related tweet, she wrote simply, 'The audacity..."
Rihanna was referring to the release of a video showing former Baltimore Ravens star Rice punching fiancee Janay Palmer — now his wife — in a casino elevator. The video's release led to the termination of his team contract and an indefinite suspension from the NFL.
Per Sports Illustrated, CBS also pulled Rihanna and Jay Z's hit song "Run This Town," which was scheduled to play before last Thursday night's kickoff, in the wake of the Rice video release.
CBS Sports chairman Sean McManus told SI.com: "It's important to realize we are not overacting to this story but it is as big a story as has faced the NFL...We thought journalistically and from a tone standpoint, we needed to have the appropriate tone and coverage. A lot of the production elements we wanted in the show are being eliminated because of time or tone."
For more information on domestic abuse or to get help for yourself or someone you love, visit the website for The National Domestic Violence Hotline or call 1-800-799-7233.